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balkline billiards

group of billiard games played with three balls (red, white, and white with a spot) on a table without pockets, upon which lines are drawn parallel to all cushions and usually either 14 or 18 in (36 or 46 cm) away from them. The object of the games is to score caroms by driving a cue ball against both object balls. The eight areas between the lines and cushions are called balks, and, when both object balls are within one of them, a player may score only once or twice (depending on the game played) before driving at least one of the balls out of the balk. The large central area of the table is not a balk, and scoring there is unrestricted

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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18
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